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CHAR’s Ultimate Food Guide: Pints

Words: Shamim de Brún
Images: Exterior DublinByPub, Interior George Voronov & Instagram

Eric Matthews told us during an interview last year that “a Dub and his pints is kind of like a French person and their baguette, we know where the best spots are, we love them, and we are very religious about them”.

Where does the best pints is exceptionally contentious; people will cut out your tongue if you don’t name their favourite top of the list. And I’m not even being hyperbolic. 

There have been some highly competitive categories throughout the Ultimate Dublin Food Guide series. But all pale in comparison. While working on this, we had to check the numbers twice and bicker about the results among ourselves before double-checking again. No one in the office agrees with each other, and some “can’t even” with the list calling it sacrilege. But if we trust our experts in all other things, how could we doubt them now? 

So adding to the ballads in honour of the humble pint, here are Dublin’s Ultimate Pints

10 Peadar Browne’s

The Locals Local 

Peadar Brown’s is a haphazardly decorated stone-faced Dublin 8 stalwart entrenched in nostalgia and bookended by apartments and fast food. The inside is rebel chic with a trad music edge. But by the deity of your choice, do they do a good pint of plain. Slinging reams of creamy bois served in the preferred clean tulip-shaped vessel at the perfect temperature, you can’t go wrong. 

This was drinks consultant Gillian Boyles‘s top spot for pints in the city, bar none. She couldn’t get enough saying, “this is my number one place to have a glass of Guinness”, and “Peadar Brown’s just does an amazing Guinness.”

Order: A Pint
Location:
Clanbrassil St
Opening Hours:
Every day from 14:00 to 22:00 except Tuesdays

09 Walshes

The Thick Pinter

Credit: DublinByPub

 This spot in Stoneybatter always crops up when the conversation invariably turns to the best pint. Their Guinness is known to be good and thick. The Rumor and conjecture on the cobbled street are that the family-run spot throws a good session too.

This spot is a go-to for the kween of condiments herself, Holly Dalton. She said drinking a pint in Walshes is like taking a trip to an Irish Rovers from Coronation Street. She wishes she could live in Stoneybatter just so she could drink here and be an actual local. And if that isn’t a winning endorsement, nothing is. 

Order: A Pint
Location:
Stoneybatter
Opening Hours:
Monday to Friday from 15:00 till late and from 13:00 on weekends.
For more information, visit Instagram.

 08 Lord Edward

The Royal Pint 

This one still feels like a hidden treasure, even though we all know it exists. You have to want to go to Lord Edward to go there, which means you only get deliberate pintmen and women of the world imbibing there. Sommelier Tara Deery named Lord Edward her top spot because of its perfect daytime pint. 

At this time of the year, it is the most organically festive spot. It doesn’t try too hard and delivers a cracking Guinness every time. It’s a personal favourite of our own Adrian Errity, who, despite his penchant for Smithicks over Guinness, has pretty good taste in pinteries. 

Order: A Pint
Location:
Christ Church
Opening Hours:
Everyday from 12:00 till Late

07 – Slattery’s

The Snug Pint 

The iconic pub on 217 Rathmines Road is widely acknowledged as one of the city’s foremost traditional pubs. So it’s no shock to the system that it’s comfortably on our list. It tops Kevin from Nomo Ramen’s list and sits high on our resident sommeliers Tara Deery’s. She says Slattery’s is “a class place for pints”

Slattery’s, however, is deceptive. It looks like a bog-standard traditional pub, but there’s something different about it. It draws you in slowly and all at once with its gorgeous pints. 

Order: A Pint
Location:
Rathmines
Opening Hours:
Weekdays from 15:00 and weekends from 13:00 till Late

06 Glimmerman

The Maze

The Glimmerman is a mainstay in Dublin 7. Just when people counted it out, the conventional old-man pub branched out and created what could be the best hipster smoking area outside the Workman’s club. Complete with street food. They deftly combined the two coexisting worlds of Dublin most juxtaposed in Stoneybatter.

Richie and Alex from Bahay are both big fans of a pint in the Glimmerman. Alex said, “It’s a really good pull of really good old-school pull of a pint at the Glimmerman. That’s one of my favourites in Dublin. It’s just so nice. The staff there are amazing, and it’s just pints!”

Order: A Pint
Location:
Stoneybatter
Opening Hours:
Everyday from 17:00

05 Toners

The Guinness Family Favourite

When it comes to the age-old ‘where is, the best Guinness’ Toners Pub has a genuine hat in the ring, with Rory Guinness of the original Guinness family, claiming Toners pulls the best pint in the land. It’s hard to argue with the originators of a national treasure. And sure, why would you want to? Toners even have a rooftop for sunny evenings. Perfection.

Master of Wine Mick O’Connell of Neighbourhood Wine notoriety agrees, saying, “Toners and specifically Toners front as opposed to toners back chaos. I love going into Toners and asking for the less cold Guinness taps. But, of course, they will naturally go towards the colder ones. Still, the less cold tops are bloody amazing”.

Holly Dalton is also firmly team Toners, “I have a huge place in my heart for Toners because when I used to work on Stephen’s Green, I finished work at like 12:00. I would always like have time for one and toners for last orders. So it’s kind of a special place in my heart,”. Unlike Mick. However, Holly has a grá for the smoker’s area, “The beer garden is class as well. I feel like Dublin has had some good beer gardens, but Toners is up there for me”. 

Order: A Pint
Location:
Baggot Street
Opening Hours:
Everyday from 11:30 till Late

04 Kehoes

The Centre Local

Kehoes makes you feel like you’re a local while being in the centre of town. Despite being on every must-hit list for tourists, the general crowd is very much Dublin-centric. You’re bound to run into someone you know, doubly if you’re a Southsider. But not in a ‘avoid-I-hate-that-bitch’ way, more in an ‘hows-your-da’ way. 

On top of that, they do a soil pint of plain. Again, it’s a Gastro Gays top spot: “Another place that we really, really like is Kehoes off Grafton Street, especially if you’re in that area, have an hour to kill. It’s a perfect hyper-central spot, but at the same time, it’s not always overly packed. A great snug on the inside, spilling onto the streets, really, really great pints.”

Order: A Pint
Location:
South Anne Street
Opening Hours:
Every Day from 12:00 till Late

03 Fallons

The Ineffable

Credit Dublin by Pub

How do you even begin to describe Fallon’s? It’s so classic and yet such a formidable part of contemporary Dublin. You are elbowing tourists out of the way for seats or, in warmer months, just clumping outside, drawing straws for who has to fight to the bar. Either way, it’s such a good pint that it is the stuff of legend. Some say it is the best pint in Dublin 8, which is full of stiff competition. 

Alex, Richie, and Sommelier Tara Deery all sing Fallon’s praises. Tara said, “ it would have to be Fallon’s. But you’d have to go, not at the same time everyone else goes. It’s so small, but I love it when it’s raining and really cosy inside. Really good pints of Guinney. It’s cosy with loads of like little nooks and crannies. You can kind of nestle into it. 

Order: A Pint
Location:
The Coomb
Opening Hours:
Depends on the day tbh

​​02 Grogan’s

The Toastie

Grogan’s. Everyone loves Grogan’s. Right?” said the Gastro Gays, and they were on to something – aren’t they always? The appeal of Grogan’s is obvious, a family-run pub steeped in all the things that make Dublin pubs great: art, literature and political leans. It’s where you chance your arm to get a seat on the weekend, and you seriously consider giving up once there. Its ham and cheese toasties go down in Dublin infamy, while their Guinness is known to be one of the best.

The Gastro Gays “love it there. It’s it is a classic. Everything about it is just so, so nice. Especially if you sit outside, you know what you’ll start to amass because everyone seems to be walking down streets and will see you and like stop in for a pint”.

Alex, Tara and Kevin from Nomo Ramen are all fans, with Kevin saying, “secretly, I’m a huge fan of Grogan’s even though it’s often hard to get seats there”.

Order: A Pint
Location:
Ah you know yourself
Opening Hours:
From 10:30 Monday to Saturday and from 12:30 on Sundays

01 Long Hall

The Top Dog

Licensed since 1766, The Long Hall holds a shrine to vintage Dublin. It’s one of the most beautiful pubs in Dublin’s pub lore. Full to the brim of Victorian charm, it even bears the symmetrical design unique to the century, alongside gold leaf enhancements, bevelled glass and hand wood carvings. 

Over the years, playwrights, politicians and writers have frequented the place, amongst them Bruce Springsteen and Phil Lynott, who sat up at the bar and recorded the maudlin part of his video for Old Town in 1982 there. 

This is the second year in a row. The Long Hall was unanimously voted the best pint of Guinness in Dublin by our panel of experts. It was ranked top by Alex, Richie, Gillian, Kevin, Mick, Holly and Rob Hughs from Big Fan. In fact, it was Rob’s only pick saying it was the place to go for pints. 

The Gastro Gays got it right on the money when they said, “The best place to get a pint in Dublin for us is the long haul. Always, always so good, so satisfying. And then taking every box creamy, cold, the lovely space too. So that’s one that we love bringing friends and visitors to just because it’s a gorgeous space. And I think if you’re brazen enough, you’ll always get a seat and then you’ll always find a way to perch somewhere or get a seat, which is kind of nice, whereas other places can be quite crowded.“

Order: And whatever you’re havin’ yourself
Location:
George’s Street
Opening Hours:
Monday – Wednesday 12.30-23.00, Thursday 12.20-23.30, Friday-Saturday 12.30-00.30
For more information, visit the Instagram.

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